URBANJAZZ RADIO (U.J.R.) Interview with Elzer Mokoena (EM)

Elzer Mokoena is the Founder of Black Fruit Production's, and one of the Hottest young Producer's in what is fast becoming South Africa's emerging position as the Global Capital of Dance Music. UrbanJazz Review recently caught up with Elzer to discuss his Music, the World Cup and the South African Dance scene.

UJR: Hi Elzer, how are you doing?

EM: I'm doing great thanks for asking.

UJR: First of all, have you had a chance to see any live matchesin the World Cup?

EM: Well, unfortunately not yet...but I`ve watched all already played games at Fan parks and the vibe is incredible, fans united, vuvuzelas being blown excessively, it's amazing.

UJR: Ok, what made you get into the music industry, and what age did you begin producing?

EM: Growing up in a musical and artistic family...music is was always the main voice of communication within the family and we were told that music is a Universal language, it proved to be true as my passion grew when I was member of a school choir learning the basics of musical instruments, hence, I attended music production workshops. In 2006, at the age 16 and whilst in high school, got my first PC, and, started to experiment with different DAWs

UJR: When, and why was Black Fruit Records started?

EM: The label was founded in 2008, need of promotion, and difficulties of getting signed to labels as deep House Producers was my fierce drive to establish the label. The label serves as a platform for upcoming deep house producers to showcase flair, skills and the love of Deep House. The label has been well appreciated in South Africa since it started.

UJR: What would you say has been the most memorable stage of your Career, so far?

EM: The most memorable stage of my career so far.... would be when I was offered the opportunity to work on my recent EP, which is the current release on Deeper Shades Recordings titled "Black Angel Final Conviction EP".DeeperShades.net has been one of our main sources of inspiration as BlackFruit Records Artists, so this is truly a measurement of how far we have got with our deeper movement!

UJR: Outside of South Africa, where would you say you have enjoyed your greatest success?

EM: It is only recently in 2010 that we are starting to reach fans globally but so far the US is showing appreciation for our music and we are hoping to get the same support around the UK as well.

UJR: There has always been a great Musical tradition in South Africa, but what are the roots of House Music in S.A?

EM: South Africa was introduced to House Music after our very own house music pioneers` determination and love of house music, put together house compilations. House music took over since the early 90`s after the likes of Vinny Da Vinci, the late Iggy Smallz, Christos, DJ Fresh and Oskido released their house compilations, licensing tracks from international producers. Then came the next generation that was interested in the production of local House Music, either than licensing, this generation features the likes of the Twin Brothers( Revolution),Ganyani, Dj Cleo and
BlackCoffee.

UJR: We first became aware of your Productions through the single by Iron Dream, entitled 'I Have A Dream', what other artists are you currently working with?

EM: The label also works with other up and coming talented producers such as Fistos aka RigidRoots, 2skee, Kid-Saykie, BlackAngel,Roto,Luke Brown, Tobetsa, JamBOx,EM2, Bekzin Terris, Dj Sthe, Reloaded Keys and Techno T. Some of these artists are featured on the "Iron Dream Promo Ep" and the
"Shadows Of Deep" EP.

UJR: Share with us some of your thoughts on the current state of Global Dance music today?

EM: Thanks to technology, the production of music has become inexpensive and convenient for producers & artists who are still starting out. In addition to that the dance music scene is growing quite rapidly through the use and availability of digital distributors. The industry will continue to grow as more and more young talents join the Iindustry, TOGETHER-AS-ONE lets all support one another!

UJR: Some people believe that Music, like Sport, as we have recently seen with the World Cup can be a force to break down barriers, and bring people together, do you agree?

EM: Definitely....music has been a unifying force and it has been so for years even during the Apartheid and oppression years in South Africa, music was used as an element to drive people in joining the struggle for Freedom. So this proves that there is something celestial about bringing people together through rhythm and harmony. Music is indeed a universal language, it is colour blind!

UJR: Finally, what words of advice and encouragement would you give to any young people thinking of perusing a career in the music industry?

EM: Perseverance is of at most important in the industry, because when you still starting out you will obviously get critics about you music, and some djs may not play your music but that should only encourage you to reach your full potential. Another thing is that do not try to imitate other producers only look to them as your reference, most artists often confuse the two.

UJR: Thank you for taking the time out to talk us.

EM: My pleasure, thank you UrbanJazz.........PEACE